Globalisation Essay, Research Paper
It is argued that globalisation does not necessarily result in the domination and erasure of local cultures but rather engenders a resistance which can take the best of the global and reinforce and revitalise the potency of local cultures. Discuss with reference to the readings and concepts encountered in the subject.
Globalisation does not necessarily result in the domination and erasure of local cultures, is a positive statement one can make from the reading Understanding Globalisation: History and Representation in the Emergence of the World as a Single Place, (Holton 1998). We will be looking at where globalisation comes from, or as far back as we can trace it in history. Globalisation engenders a resistance which can take the best of the global and reinforce and revitalise the potency of local cultures. Also, with looking at the reading mentioned previously and defining the term globalisation one can see that it would be quite the best of the global cultures which are taken and reinforced and revitalised into the local cultures, that is that my understanding of the term global in the question is to mean global cultures . As we all know, it is a simple fact of history which is able to show that global cultures are where the best come from in order to revitalise local cultures.
Globalisation is historical, and was present in the vast past of the world. It is through the history that we can see globalisation did exist and took several forms, history, politics, economics, religion, capitalism, social behaviour, modernisation, and imperialism. These were all present in history from the beginning. There was the developing of The West which did create dominance of local cultures from those who claimed to be superior. We know that The West was a social level of development, which first occurred in Europe. In Hall s definition of The West in, Formations of Modernity, we are told that a society of the west is developed, industrialised, urbanized, capitalist, and modern (p277). These societies were a result of historical processes – economic, political, social and cultural (p277). Therefore, it can be said in broad terms that it is the rising of the west which enables the west, the globalised nations, to gain dominance and near to total erasure of local cultures. With this rising of the west there is also capitalism and imperialism without a doubt and it is though these elements that there is domination and almost total erasure that occurs. Let s take the Dutch, and their dominance in Java. The Dutch colonised Java and with doing so became dominant of the country and nearly totally erased it s culture. They capitalized what the country offered them in terms of, raw materials, which were rare or not yet discovered in other parts of the world at the time, and made it their own. They also made the Javanese work in the fields for them in turn for a wage. Unfortunately the Javanese were not given the opportunity to own their own plantations as they didn t have the means, unlike the richer countries of Europe. The Javanese did lose their land, raw materials and freedom however, they were able to stay in Java and keep to their own religious beliefs and local culture. Unfortunately, it is not the best compensation but it is who they are and that is important because one s identity is all they really have in such circumstances.
Globalisation has indeed been largely synonymous with the Western modernisation (Holton p44). So we can see that modernisation is also a part of the process of globalisation according to Holton. Modernisation of the world has happened to be a process which each nation has gone through and goes through when they are ready. Where the modernity begins though if from the central global cultures who then feed it off slowly to other nations.
So the west is created and is powerful over those who are inferior to the west. The positive outcome of globalisation could be said is what created many nations which are present today. Colonisation of some nations, not all, has given the people of these nations a religion and opportunity to work for wages. Capitalism created the opportunity for individuals to gain a profit, and live a better life, it was so believed. With capitalism and globalisation, Worsley believed that the Europeans were able to try and make the world as a single social system however, the gulf in cultures made it hard for different cultures to mix. With this global process going on, the world being dominated by trade and the inevitable integration of cultures through imperialisation. The world has become a human society working to benefit them, consequently benefiting each other through trade and socialisation. Global cultures have offered much in the way of the potency for local cultures. For example, through the colonisation of South America by the Spanish and Portuguese, South America was offered a lot in the way of the potency of their local cultures of each nation. Let s take Brazil as a detailed example, the Portuguese colonised Brazil and gave it a name, a common language, and a good strong catholic religion, revitalizing her status as Brazil. Also, the elements of economics, politics and social standing are effected as well from the colonisation. With the Portuguese out to make profit from Brazil they gave her the opportunity to function and create her own local culture, from the best of the global culture, being that of the European – Portuguese culture, as well as making the profit they were after.
Globalisation is not only about structures, institutions, and networks, but also about the way in which we think of social life and our place in it (Holton, p33). This statement is however not of Holton s thoughts, but those of Roland Robertson, 1992. From Robertson s view I am able to conclude that globalisation created peace amongst nations and over time a global culture formed, with its aims to represent the world as a single place.
With the expansion of capital export from Western countries to inferior countries with local culture, is a great economic best that global cultures can give to local cultures. Offering them the opportunity to experience the use and profit that can be made from the capital. From our global history we can see that the economic control that the West took on through globalisation was much to the benefit of those local cultures who economically could not function properly. The Bretton Woods institutions, specifically, the World bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF), played a key role in re-estabilizing the post-war economy on economically liberal market-orientated principles (Holton, p48). From what Philip Curtin says it is obvious that any of the best from global cultures would result in the revitalization of local cultures. No human group could invent by itself more than a small part of its cultural and technical heritage (1984, p1), so we can see that alone, none of the local cultures would have survived the wars or until today.
We have been able to see that through history and the processes of globalisation that there has been domination and erasure however, not total dominance and erasure of local cultures. Globalisation has engendered a resistance which takes the best of the global and reinforces and revitalizes the potency of local cultures.